Drupal - Choosing a Business Consultant

    In this article, as promised in the 7 best tools for solving business problems from a business consultant generalist, I will tell you why I chose Drupal and why it is so good. The article was written based on my report at Drupalcamp Moscow 2014 .
    My profession is a business consultant for small and medium businesses. I work with the whole company as a whole, that is, with almost all its parts: web sites, optimization, 1s, CRM. All that I will tell from my words is my experience, which I gained through trial and error. I am not afraid to talk about my mistakes, because without them there would be no experience.

    Why am I using drupal for my projects?

    Let's start by talking about projects. Usually, when I come to a company, it has several problems that need to be solved. For example, they open a warehouse or it does not work well, the accounting system is not configured correctly, not high-quality or not functional modules. And one of these problems is usually a site. That is, the question arises of creating an online store.

    Accordingly, drupal is obtained, as part of the project, part of the whole. Because I'm renting the whole project. I rent a site, if necessary, with integration of 1s, if necessary with integration of a CRM system, if necessary with a warehouse, if necessary with everything together. Since the site is only part of the whole, I can’t spend too much time on it, and it’s very important for me to make it quick and not get back to it as much time as possible.

    To begin with, when I started doing business consulting, the first site I did was made on Bitrix. To get started, I ordered a banner for a hat. The banner was this: three girls in swimsuits against a background of sunflowers. I placed an ad on freelance and paid 7,000 rubles (I did not know then that a banner actually costs 200-300 rubles). I placed the banner on bitrix, then installed the module and plug-in, which cost me about 8 thousand rubles and this does not include the cost of the license itself. In the end, I wondered how much the whole site would cost me? I realized that those solutions that I use are too expensive (Bitrix, OS Cart, Magento), or not functional (it's about joomla, which I switched to after bitrix and wordpress, which I tried after the jumla). Now I understand that the cost of the banner and the cost of the site do not correlate,

    Then I tried drupal. Then a large number of plugins bribed me that it was free, and I just didn’t have any options left. At first I thought that drupal wasn’t suitable for me either, that there would also be a lot of trouble with integration, I was already thinking about returning to the expensive bitrix, but after a more in-depth study I realized that drupal is the best product on the market and I decided to take a chance.

    When I continued to work with other CMS, I came to the conclusion that many modules did not have the capabilities that could be done on drupal. After all, almost everything can be done on drupal. This integration with 1s, and integration with the CRM system, various types of publications and much more functionality that is so necessary for the client. I want to allocate the CLIENT, not you. Because basically discussions about CMS go at the level of webmasters, and many sacrifice functionality (due to not knowing the CMS needed to complete the task or the inability to implement this task in their CMS) contrary to the interests of the client.

    Why choose drupal?

    Because it helps you sell and not blush for the result. Sell ​​the service - earn your bread; if not, you won’t get anything. In addition, it is important how you sell the service, whether the butter on the bread depends on it. When I sell my services and propose making a site on drupal, I am sure that I am offering the best product currently available on the market. And here confidence is very important! It is confidence and not faith. Consistency is factual, for faith it’s enough to just believe marketing.

    Why? Because here, thanks to the modules, almost everything can be done. I am sure that other CMS do not, for the same money. For drupal 7, there are about 10,000 modules for every taste and functionality. And if not, then creating a module on Drupal is very easy to create.

    Clear architecture.

    It is very important that what is intended for the client remains for the client. So that I myself, knowing that this is an understandable architecture and it is really transparent and easy to understand, could convey this to the client. For me, it is better to spend some time training and transferring your knowledge than to listen to complaints and well-grounded claims later. After all, so that I do not tell the client, he will perceive any inconvenience of the CMS as the inconvenience of the site I created, and not the CMS.

    Drupal is easy.

    There is one important point. I don’t need to choose which distribution, which edition to choose (small business, large business etc.), for me it doesn’t matter. I always know when installing drupal that if something needs to be done, I can always do it thanks to a wide selection of free modules and plugins. This is very important, and it is necessary to convey to the client. At first I did not understand this, but now I understand how important this is.

    A little bit about Bitrix licenses and difficulties when choosing paid software

    For example: In bitrix, a license prohibits multiple use of copies. That is, if you can deploy drupal for several developers and have environments that they can develop locally, then the Bitrix license prohibits this. Officially, you cannot develop sites or projects on Bitrix, having a distributed team using git, and similar decentralized systems. There is still a very unpleasant moment, when installing a plug-in or module on britix, a license failure may occur, this in turn is a support application, time to wait for a response, loss of money.

    That is, it turns out that you are constrained, that is, constrained by the licensing policy. You do not know where she will come up. In order to find out, you need to understand this additionally, again a waste of time. I was contacted by bitrix clients, and when I started to understand, the first thing I needed to do was find out which edition, which kernel, is it a copy or not, did they update or did not update their 1s, why do I need it? While in drupal I looked at the system information, if necessary I updated the kernel and plugins and that's it.

    I am confident in the quality and simplicity of drupal. Under my leadership, about 20 sites were created (for a business consultant who is not involved in web development, this is a lot), these sites did not require maintenance, there was no maintenance, that is, they did and forgot. Even if the kernel is updated, it is unlikely that something will change, you do not have to rearrange the plugins and modules.

    Personality of Dries.

    Another plus is that drisa has Dris's personality behind it . If we look at other engines and the history of other engines, how do they differ? What kind of person are they associated with in your head, with what personality? Has anyone seen what kind of person is behind joomla or Magento? .. For joomla is mamba, and then the story is lost. And here the man, it is very important, he constantly directs the movement. After all, what is not being done under the direction of man is a continuation of the will of man. It is very important when working with the program you are dealing not with some kind of faceless crowd, but with someone whose opinion you can find out.

    Drupal community.

    Drupal has the friendliest, nicest community. With regards to the Bitrix communities, 1c, joomla, a different atmosphere reigns. Somewhere they are just trying to sell, somewhere they are envious and trying to write some kind of angry comment, trying to advertise something at that moment. In the drupal community, they are really trying to create something worthwhile, they really help with advice and deed.

    Many systems are destroyed by greed, that is, if a developer makes some kind of plug-in, he tries to sell it. In the jumble, in the wordpress, almost everywhere they try to monetize their plugins and modules. In drupal, this is basically not, that is, you can sell some of your quality services, but no more. But if you made the plugin, then it is already open, if the plugin closed, then it will not get into the repository. That is, everything that is accessible to the user will be in open and free access. You can check how it works, and ask the developers.
    Of course, there are paid plugins which can be bought for money, but it’s a drop in the bucket and they don’t do the weather.

    The choice of a specialist.

    Another plus. The widest selection of specialists. The market is saturated. Of course, if you are not trying to drag a specialist into the staff. If you are trying to get a person in the staff, then not only will it hardly work out for you, you won’t have any problems if you agree (sick leave, vacation, etc.). Therefore, if you want to implement a one-time project, then the choice of specialists is huge compared to the rest. I say this from my own experience. A programmer who looks to the future is engaged in a system that can give him that future. Joomla and Wordpress are not very suitable for professional development due to the disgusting quality of the first and the simplicity of the second. Bitrix, on the other hand, is fat cats that try to extract as much money from you as possible, moreover it is more difficult to sell at the expense of price, and they are helped by the wonderful 1C prefix in the name.

    Once again, drupal has excellent friendly forums where you will be answered and helped in solving the problem. And therefore, you can take any Drupalist and he can cope with any task, unlike other systems, because there are some subsystems, supersystems and editions that not everyone understands. In drupal, you just don’t think about it. If I have one programmer busy, the second busy, then no question, I will always find a third. And it’s enough for him to say: “Yes, I know well drupal”, and that’s all. Yes, someone will say that the drupal learning curve is ruthless, but still drupal is much more on the market than other CMS.

    Another point. If drupal constantly has some meetings, personal acquaintances, then with other systems it is difficult even with specialists. Even to install the module on joomla, it’s difficult to find a specialist, with wordpress a little easier. Going to joomla.org is useless. Immediately you come to drupal.ru or drupal.org and you understand that they will help you with advice and deed.


    And even with all the splendor, drupal remains for me a part of the project for integrated enterprise automation. What are the advantages of this CMS:
    1) simple integration (JSON, XML, MySQL)
    2) convenient and simple interface (very important for the client)
    In drupal, you can connect the system with almost any protocol.

    Even more likely a whole complex of problems. These systems, in principle, are compatible and integrated, but if you want to change something, then you will encounter a number of problems.
    In drupal, everything is simpler, I tell the programmer to do it, please, in this form (JSON, XML), any programmer will figure it out and do it. 1s to the programmer I say, I will give you this file, and you upload it. It just takes and loads. If I need to unload from 1s do drupal. I just form the upload of all the necessary information in xml and give it to the programmer 1s, and he considers it. That is, he does not need to know CommercML, he does not need to know drupal. Same thing with a web programmer.

    And this is exactly what I am talking about, not universality, but precisely imprisonment. Because versatility in this case interferes.
    When I explain these advantages to drupal to the client, the client begins to understand what they are offering, in his eyes the product begins to acquire value, although it is free.

    How to convince the client to choose drupal for the project?

    Selling any product you sell yourself at the same time, the first 15 seconds it evaluates your appearance, the next 5 minutes, it assesses your oratory and 15 minutes your expertise in this matter. In any case, it is necessary to try so that the customer buys exactly your product. I propose to focus on free, if you compare with bitrix. But most often the client does not know the product, he does not know what he will get in the end, he did not have a website, he saw it only on the network and does not suspect the existence of CMS. Joomla, Wordpress, drupal mean nothing to him, that is, you need to understand what he relies on when making a decision. (some, of course, heard, but mostly heard about the slightly functional WordPress, because it occupies a large share of the Russian market and the templates are pretty nice to say). In this case, push the drupal functionality. The sale of drupal is of great help to me.

    Drupal weakness

    The most significant drawback of drupal is the English repository. That is, all modules and all development is in English. In the vast majority of cases, the client does not know English and he cannot understand the description of one or many modules. Is that bad. But so this drawback is covered by the free and functionality of the CMS. And besides, usually the client cares about the product on which you can make money (or use it for your own good), and not which module or platform is used to create his site.

    Another “weak” side of drupal.

    At first, many of my clients assured me that Bitrix (Magento) was paid, which means it differs in result. This is one of the biggest misconceptions. Bitrix (Magento) is not responsible for the result. People just want to earn money and provide a product along with free drupal, they take money, do marketing, convince of their chosenness and that’s all.
    All the same, there is an element of cooperation in drupal, we share, paid engines do not have this, that is, they work on a monetary basis and the main thing for them is to sell.

    Another point. Free means no one bears responsibility. There was a real case. The site on drupal took 2-3 place in the search. For two days flew off. I calculated the damage of 500,000 rubles. For my part, there were only 2 questions: Why not 3 billion? And why if you put losses on me, then do not share the profit with me?
    That is, there is no responsibility as such - it is necessary to inform the client. Moreover, the CMS developer is not responsible. Free means as irresponsible as paid, paid - as irresponsible as free. No responsibility here, just no. In the USA, England it’s possible. But in Russia this is definitely not there. And it is necessary to talk about this to the client, because competitors will talk about “guarantee and service”. Paid does not mean that someone is responsible for something.
    It has often been said that drupal is unsafe. But at the same time, no one could give an example. In my practice, never a single site caught a cold or allergies, there were no freezes and some problems.

    To summarize why it is beneficial for both you and your customers to use drupal for implementing projects.

    1. Drupal has a huge selection of free modules.
    2. Customer-friendly architecture.
    3. drupal is free.
    4. Qualitative.
    5. A professional and friendly community ready to help
    6. Huge selection of specialists.

    And finally, for me, drupal is probably the best CMS in the company's automation project.

    Also popular now: